03/16/10 — Teen pregnancy: What's scary about statistics? The 100 repeats.

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Teen pregnancy: What's scary about statistics? The 100 repeats.

There are some people who will be upset that there are going to be classes for expectant mothers at a local high school.

They will think that a decision like that sends the wrong message to teens -- that pregnancy might not be condoned, but that it is accepted.

But those who focus on that aspect of the Partnership for Children's decision to start an expectant mother education program at a local high school are missing the aspect of this announcement that should really scare them.

In 2008, 100 teen mothers had ANOTHER child.

The fact that Wayne County has a large number of teens entering motherhood before they have graduated high school is scary. And recent statistics are just as much of a concern as 2008's 294 tally.

But the fact that a third of them did not learn anything from the first time around and brought yet another child that they have little possibility of supporting or caring for properly into the world -- that is beyond frightening.

Perhaps the new round of classes will give these children what they need -- a real view into what it takes to be a mother and a close-up look at the consequences of unprotected sex. They need to be scared. They need to be shocked into realizing the responsibility they have taken on -- and to begin to get the skills they need to live up to it.

Classes that share real information with teens are a good idea -- especially if it means that one, two or 100 might not make the same mistake again.

Teen pregnancy is a cyclical problem that helps create poverty, poor parenting and children who are fighting to succeed.

Stopping it requires reality checks -- and facts.

Published in Editorials on March 16, 2010 9:54 AM